[Taxacom] Read... and believe...
jim.croft at gmail.com
Fri Sep 4 12:23:36 CDT 2009
you can weep if you like:
a blog post by Roger Hyam: http://www.hyam.net/blog/archives/598
" 1. Names are not reliable pointers to taxa. If a specimen is named
but the taxonomic classification used in the naming is not specified
then it can’t be know which taxon (of the multiple possible taxon
concepts for that name) it has been identified to. See Taxa, Taxon
Names and Globally Unique Identifiers in Perspective.
2. Descriptions require human interpretation. As described above, the
use of exemplar specimens combined with descriptions means that
identifications will vary between experts.
3. Relationships between descriptions are vague. The same name may be
used for several separately defined taxa. The descriptions of these
taxa may use the same or different morphological characteristics. Some
descriptions will omit characteristics used in other descriptions that
are ostensibly about of the same taxon. It is therefore not possible
to say whether the two description overlap, are equivalents or do not
intersect at all."
Jim Croft ~ jim.croft at gmail.com ~ +61-2-62509499 ~
... in pursuit of the meaning of leaf ...
... 'All is leaf' ('Alles ist Blatt') - Goethe
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